NATIONAL NEWS

Massachusetts man sentenced to life with possibility of parole in racist road rage killing

Jan 17, 2024, 3:16 PM

Dean Kapsalis is comforted by his attorneys Jack Cunha, left, and Helen Holcomb, as his sentence is...

Dean Kapsalis is comforted by his attorneys Jack Cunha, left, and Helen Holcomb, as his sentence is read during a hearing at Middlesex Superior Court, Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2024, in Woburn, Mass. Kapsalis, convicted in the 2021 killing of Henry Tapia, a Black man, following a road rage encounter in which he yelled a racial slur, was sentenced to life in prison with possibility of parole after 15 years. (David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via AP, Pool)

A Massachusetts man convicted of murder in the 2021 death of a Black man after a racist road rage encounter was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 15 years.

Dean Kapsalis, of Hudson, was convicted by a jury last year of second-degree murder, violation of constitutional rights and other offenses in the killing of Henry Tapia. Kapsalis and Tapia got into an argument on Jan. 19, 2021. Investigators found that as the argument wound down, Kapsalis shouted a racial slur and then hit Tapia with his pickup as he drove off. Tapia died at a hospital, prosecutors said.

“The murder of Henry Tapia is a senseless tragedy fueled by hate and anger,” District Attorney Marian Ryan said last year after the conviction. “The fact that some of the last words Henry Tapia heard were a horrific racial insult meant to intimidate and threaten him based on the color of his skin is something we cannot tolerate.”

Judge David A. Deakin, according to The Boston Globe, called the sentence Wednesday proportional to the crime. While he took into account the support Kasalis received from friends and family, he noted that “your record reflects essentially a lifelong tendency toward violence.”

Deakin also addressed relatives of Tapia, who left behind a fiancee and children.

“I am well aware that no sentence can give them what they most want, which is to have Mr. Tapia back,” Deakin said. “If I could, I wouldn’t do anything other than that.”

Kapsalis argued at trial that Tapia’s death was an accident. His sentencing was delayed by his unsuccessful attempt to reduce his conviction to manslaughter.

National News

Image: Kimberly Cheatle, then director of the U.S. Secret Service, testifies during a House Committ...

Associated Press

Secret Service director Cheatle steps down after assassination attempt against Trump at rally

Kimberly Cheatle, the director of the Secret Service is stepping down from her job, according to an email she sent to staff.

20 minutes ago

Associated Press

Oscar Mayer Wienermobile flips onto its side after crash along suburban Chicago highway

OAK BROOK, Ill. (AP) — One of Oscar Mayer’s hot dog-shaped Wienermobiles ended up flipped onto its side after crashing on a suburban Chicago highway, police said. The Wienermobile hit a car Monday morning along Interstate 294 and its driver lost control and overcorrected, causing it to roll onto its side near the Chicago suburb […]

41 minutes ago

U.S. Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle prepares to testify about the attempted assassination...

Associated Press

Secret Service director steps down after assassination attempt against ex-President Trump at rally

WASHINGTON (AP) — The director of the Secret Service said Tuesday she is resigning following the assassination attempt against former President Donald Trump that unleashed intensifying outcry about how the agency tasked with protecting current and former presidents could fail in its core mission. Kimberly Cheatle, who had served as Secret Service director since August […]

43 minutes ago

FILE - Rain soaked memorials for those who died in a mass shooting sit along the roadside by Scheme...

Associated Press

3 Army Reserve officers disciplined after reservist killed 18 people last October in Maine

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Three Army Reserve officers were disciplined for dereliction of duty in the aftermath of a rampage in which a reservist killed 18 people in Maine, according to an Army report that cited communication failures within the chain of command, and between military and civilian hospitals, among other shortcomings revealed during an […]

1 hour ago

Associated Press

2024 Election Latest: Harris has secured enough support to earn party’s nomination, AP survey finds

Vice President Kamala Harris had a busy 24 hours after being endorsed as the Democratic presidential candidate by President Joe Biden. She has secured enough delegates to earn the party’s nomination and raised more than $81 million, a record sum for the 2024 political cycle. Meanwhile, The Secret Service director testified before a congressional committee […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

2 killed when small plane crashes after takeoff from Long Island airport

RONKONKOMA, N.Y. (AP) — A small plane crashed shortly after takeoff on New York’s Long Island, killing both people who were on board, authorities said. The single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza A36 took off from MacArthur Airport in Ronkonkoma at about 6:15 p.m. Monday and crashed after the pilot tried to return to the runway, Suffolk County […]

3 hours ago

Massachusetts man sentenced to life with possibility of parole in racist road rage killing